Thursday, January 5, 2017

Halal Cart Flavored Cauliflower and Turmeric Brown Rice

I had Halal Cart Chicken twice when I was in New York City recently.  This is a vegan take on this my favorite New York cart food using cauliflower instead of chicken.  The Halal Cart chicken or cauliflower is not complete without the fragrant delicious Turmeric Rice.  I opted to use brown rice instead of the traditional basmati or extra long-grain rice to make this must-have accompaniment to the halal court inspired vegan version.  

When this is served in the styrofoam containers by the cart vendors, a side of lettuce with tomatoes, doused with white sauce or hot sauce, (which was over the chicken and rice also) goes with the order.  For the white sauce I used Ranch dressing which I have a vegan version of in this blog.  You can add sriracha to the dressing to make it a bit spicy but not quite as hot as the hot sauce they pour over the chicken.  

The list of ingredients for this vegan recipe which I obtained from the one for Halal Cart Chicken, copy cat version, featured in this site is short but still gives that bold spicy flavor.  The list of ingredients for the turmeric rice is also short but full of the characteristic flavor identified with this popular accompaniment to the Halal meats.   

Halal Cart Flavored Cauliflower

Adapted from this site
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1 whole head of cauliflower, cut into chunks including stem and leaves
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth or water (optional)
Heat the oil at medium heat in a saute pan and then add the coriander powder and oregano.  Heat the spices till they shimmer.  Add the garlic and continue to heat till the garlic is cooked.  Add the cauliflower and lemon juice and continue to cook with stirring till the vegetable is cooked but still crispy.  Add vegetable broth or water if necessary.

Turmeric Brown Rice

  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 cup brown rice, uncooked
  • 4 1/2 cup vegetable broth
  • salt and pepper to taste
Heat the oil in a medium sauce pan and add the spices.  Heat the spices with stirring till they shimmer and give off their aroma.  Add the rice and stir until they are coated with the oil mixture.  Heat for about 4 to 5 minutes till the rice is toasted or lightly brown.  Add the broth and allow the mixture to boil and then cover the sauce pan and simmer for about 45 minutes till the brown rice is cooked.


Place the rice on a plate and top it with the cauliflower.  Serve with a side of lettuce with tomatoes salad doused with Ranch dressing (vegan version recipe is here).  You may add sriracha if you want to the dressing. Top the cauliflower and rice with the dressing also.

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